All astronauts have degrees in science, engineering, or medicine, but other than that, there's no one path to NASA. My degrees are in physics and space physics, and I did well enough in university that I actually started working at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas, as a robotics flight controller right after college. Getting hired by NASA is like getting through the world's strictest HR screen.
Dozens of people were killed in central Italy after a 6.2-magnitude earthquake nearly leveled hilltop towns and trapped residents under piles of rubble. The Wednesday morning earthquake is the latest in a string of deadly seismic events to strike Italy in the past four decades. The Mediterranean nation is particularly prone to earthquakes for a mix of geographical reasons, Jennifer Weston, a seismologist with the International Seismological Center in England, told Mashable.
It was a time of conquest and conversions. Over 250 years, from the 11th century onwards, the rulers of Bagan built more than 10,000 magnificent religious monuments. The stupas, temples and monasteries became the defining emblems of Bagan, the capital of the Pagan (pronounced PUH'-gahn) empire that ruled Myanmar from roughly 1044 to 1287.
Famed oceanographer Robert Ballard discovered the Titanic, the Bismarck, the USS Yorktown and John F. Kennedy's PT-109. On Tuesday, he added another accomplishment to his list of documenting the world's greatest shipwrecks: the first images in more than six decades of the USS Independence, an iconic World War II aircraft carrier scuttled in 1951 off the California coast, half a mile under the sea. In a 20-hour-long expedition, Ballard's team, working with officials from the Navy and NOAA -- the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration -- revealed breathtaking images of the lost carrier's flight deck, a Hellcat fighter plane, anti-aircraft guns, hatches, ladders and even the letters of the ship's name still visible on the hull, all submerged 30 miles west of Half Moon Bay.
With Tesla unveiling its Master Plan 2.0 that includes a fleet of shared, driverless vehicles, Ford's announcement that it will mass produce fully-autonomous cars by 2021, and Uber's plan to use driverless cars in Pittsburgh by the end of August, there has never been more enthusiasm for the potential of self-driving cars. But, while Tesla's Autopilot and other driver assistance systems have come a long way in advancing the technology behind autonomous driving, there are still some big technical hurdles to overcome to get these vehicles ready for the public—and that's fantastic news for tech jobs. If you're a software developer, engineer, roboticist, or designer, now has never been a better time
One man's fatal lung infection highlights a rare danger that musicians may face: getting sick from fungi growing within their instruments, according to a recent report of the case. The 61-year-old man developed what his doctors in England described as "bagpipe lung," and died just a month after he was hospitalized for his infection, according to the case report, published today (Aug. 22) in the journal Thorax. The man had previously been diagnosed with a lung condition called hypersensitivity pneumonitis, in 2009, the doctors who treated him wrote.
Seals in tiny hats might conjure up images of the circus or Sea World, but, in Antarctica, elephant seals with hat-like sensors are helping scientists study melting ice. The project to study the temperature and salinity of Antarctica bottom water (AABW) is led by Dr. Guy Williams of the University of Tasmania, and is supported by an international team of researchers who hope to find clues into the immediate effects of climate change.
A new group of critically endangered primates has been spotted in Vietnam, raising hopes the rare creatures may not be wiped out in the next decade as scientists had feared. The Delacour's langur, black and white with a full face of whiskers, is indigenous to Vietnam, but their numbers have dwindled in recent years because of poaching and mining activity in the country's northern forests. "It's great news for this particular species because had we not found this new population, they were in grave danger of being wiped out within a decade," spokeswoman for FFI in Vietnam, Akofa Wallace, told AFP Tuesday.
China has been aggressively expanding its space program in recent years. It launched the Chang'e 3 mission back in 2013 that carried its Yutu rover, which lasted for two years when it was supposed to last only for three months, to the moon. The country also launched a quantum satellite in mid-August to enable hack-proof communications. The six-wheeled rover it's blasting off to space in 2020 will be larger than Yutu at 441 pounds. It will be equipped with 13 different instruments, including a radar that can drill into the ground and a remote-sensing camera, to take a closer look at the Martian soil and environment. Like Yutu, it's only supposed to gather and beam back data for three months, though
Monsanto Co has withdrawn an application seeking approval for its next generation of genetically modified cotton seeds in India, a major escalation in a long-running dispute between New Delhi and the world's biggest seed maker. A letter sent by Monsanto's local partner in India, the conglomerate's biggest market outside the Americas, strongly objects to a government proposal that would force Monsanto to share its technology with local seed companies.
British MPs have issued a report detailing the damage to the environment wreaked by microbeads used in cosmetic products. The report from the House of Commons Environmental Audit Committee called on the the government to introduce a legislative ban on microbeads in cosmetics and toiletries. Because of their size — typically 0.1 to 0.5 millimetres in length — microbeads can easily go down plug holes and pass through water filtration systems.
Atlantic puffin chicks on Machias Seal Island in the Gulf of Maine have had the worst breeding season ever recorded, with the majority of chicks starving to death in burrows, scientists said. A drop in the puffins' food supply is to blame, said Tony Diamond, director of the Atlantic Laboratory for Avian Research at the University of New Brunswick. In a typical year, 60 percent of the puffin nests with eggs produce chicks that fly off the nest, and this year, the success rate was 12 percent, the Portland Press Herald (http://bit.ly/2bCwkaf) reported.
Six scientists are close to wrapping up a year of near isolation in a Mars simulation on a Hawaii mountain. The scientists are housed in a dome on Mauna Loa and can go outside only in spacesuits, the Hawaii Tribune-Herald reported. Kim Binsted, principal investigator for the Hawaii Space Exploration Analog and Simulation, said this simulation is the second-longest of its kind after a mission that lasted 520 days in Russia.
Four4Four Tech: Cincinnati Zoo reacts to Harambe meme onslaught; Tokyo Olympics eye smartphone gold, Tim Cooks fifth anniversary as Apple CEO, does Amazon have a cheap music service up its sleeve?
Men who earn more money than their wives may be rolling in the bucks, but they tend to have poor health and heightened anxiety, new research shows. Researchers analyzed surveys from 9,000 young married men and women in the United States taken annually over a 15-year period, and evaluated each participant's response on income, health and psychological wellness. The findings suggest that men who are primary breadwinners — and who, in essence, fulfill the culturally held expectation that husbands should bring home more money than their wives — are actually worse off than men who earn salaries that are more equal to those of their wives.
Humans are likely to blame, with developers building on traditional habitats and farmers changing landscapes, but British citizens are stepping up to do what they can for the spiny little beasts. Some hold official, paying positions (a job in Ipswich garnered approximately 150 applications this summer), while others, like Linda Cleme, volunteer their time, working to rehabilitate hedgehogs. "I've got very fond of hedgehogs because they don't cause any harm to people," she told the Wall Street Journal.
Embraced by kings and freedom fighters alike, Myanmar's peacocks have long been a national symbol of pride and resistance -- but they are becoming ever harder to spot in the wild. Ornithologist Thet Zaw Naing is worried. Every year that goes by, Myanmar's national bird becomes a less familiar sight.
Researchers at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich in Germany have demonstrated a new technique called “tissue clearing,” which can turn the entire body of an animal transparent so that it can be examined in previously unimaginable levels of detail. “We wanted to find a method of converting biological tissue into a transparent structure for high-resolution deep tissue laser scanner,” Dr. Ali Ertürk, group leader at the university’s Acute Brain Injury Research Group, told Digital Trends. Unlike X-rays, the technique doesn’t just show the skeleton of a subject, but also its entire central nervous system. The treatment has the side effect of reducing the body to one-third of its size due to the dehydrating process, although this turned out to help the team since it made looking at it under a microscope easier.
Getting good WiFi at a sporting event isn't easy. But researchers at MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory think they've solved this problem. In crowded areas -- be it a concert, airport, conference hall or sports stadium -- a bunch of wireless routers need to be installed to deliver Internet access to everyone. Having so many routers can create interference, leaving a frustrated crowd with painfully slow Internet access. In a new paper published online, the MIT team described a method for managing networks that causes the routers to collaborate better. The researchers developed algorithms that process a router's signal so that multiple routers can send information on
Most quakes occur at shallow depths, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. Italy's quake was very shallow, originating between 2 1/2 miles (4 kilometers) and 6 miles (10 kilometers) underground, according to Italy's geological service and the USGS. By contrast, the 6.8 quake in Myanmar was deeper — at 52 miles (84 kilometers), which is considered an intermediate depth.
The world's oldest found Tyrannosaurus rex is about to take flight. Trix, a 66-million-year-old female fossil found in Montana, will board a KLM Royal Dutch Airlines flight from Chicago to Amsterdam on Tuesday. Trix even has her own passport, whose headshot accurately captures the mood of most people in long airport security lines.
Russia has reached two more milestones in its endeavour to close the nuclear fuel cycle. Mashinostroitelny Zavod (MSZ) - part of Russian nuclear fuel manufacturer TVEL - has completed acceptance tests of components for its ETVS-14 and ETVS-15 experimental fuel assemblies with mixed nitride fuel for the BREST and BN fast neutron reactors. MSZ has also announced the start of research and development work on the technical design of the "absorbent element" of the core of the BREST-OD-300 reactor. Russia plans to construct 11 new nuclear power reactors (not including 5 under construction) by 2030 - including two BN-1200 sodium-cooled fast neutron reactors. The BN-1200 units are to be built at the
"It's not only the closest terrestrial planet found, it's probably the closest planet outside our solar system that will ever be found because there is no star closer to the solar system than this one, and any planet around that star is the closest to our solar system," said lead study author Guillem Anglada-Escudé. "The only thing you can hope to find between that is Planet Nine, but that would a solar system object or a brown dwarf that hasn't been discovered," researcher Pedro Amado added. Here is what we know about the planet, as well as the questions that researchers hope to be able to answer. Photos:Weird and wonderful planets beyond our solar system This artist's impression shows the planet
The percentage of U.S. mothers who breast-feed their newborns continues to rise, but many stop breast-feeding before their infant is 6 months old, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In 2013, 81.1 percent of U.S. mothers said they started out breast-feeding their baby. Breast-feeding rates were highest in Utah, where 94.4 percent of mothers said they breast-fed their newborns in 2013.
There are many national security challenges facing the United States, but too often our focus is exclusively on threats from terrorism, geopolitics and cyberattacks. As the country confronts the arrival of the Zika virus and contemplates travel bans to Miami, it’s time to have an adult conversation about the threats posed by biology.